So I've been on this BYOB kick lately, more to come. It all started when my friend Jonathan and I went out for dinner after he worked and we decided to just wander and we walked by a place he'd been before called La Viola which he said was a good Italian BYOB. Then we proceeded to walk all the way back where we'd come from to pick up a bottle of wine. We decided on a cheap Riesling (made in Australia, don't remember anything else). The wine was sweet and the place was small and cute, maybe 8 tables or something like that. It was around 5:00pm so there weren't many other diners. All of the waiters had accents, ours was eastern european. I ordered the special which was a papardelle with veal, shrimp, and peas in a white sauce. The pasta was homemade and delicious ! Jonathan had chicken stuffed with ham, cheese, spinach, and peppers over a tomato based sauce with potatoes and cabbage. It was pretty good, but I liked mine better. Prices from 13-25ish depending on the meat you have. Definitely would go back here.
I went to Horizons for a friends birthday but I was on a tight schedule because of RA (resident assistant) duties. I've wanted to go to horizons for a long time and was sorry I couldn't really do it justice. We started off with foccacia dipped in herb oil, it was warm but a bit dry. I ate my entree while everyone else ate their appetizers. My friend Nicole had the bbq seitan over a smoked potato salad, topped with a celery branch and in a ras el hanout, not to be confused with satan. It was amazingly delicious, the consistency was of slow cooked pork but the taste more bland like chicken. The bbq flavor was very strong and the potatoes fresh and crisp. The drink her boyfriend has was adorable too, the Texas Tea. Her friends Matt and Luka had the heirloom salad which I didn't try but they ate it up so fast it must have been good. Her boyfriend had the chilled cucumber avocado soup which he said was interesting. I had the summer vegetable bouillabaisse(lobster mushrooms, saffron, white bean rouille' and olive bread crostini). I thought it would never fill me up but I was really full after eating it. I almost wish the sauce was more like a cream sauce, a little thicker though. It tasted great!
So the first time i went to Swanky Bubbles it was for restaurant week my sophomore year. This time it was for a friend's 21st birthday. It was a weeknight in the summer so we pretty much had the place to ourselves ! I ordered an ume shu sour (plum wine), veggie tempura, and tried my friend's sushi. The tempura was so yummy, i love tempura and its pretty hard to screw it up (unless your home cooking it with ingredients from a japanese grocery store and you can't read anything and your me). The sushi was mehh, they are pretty big on their sushi but i really wasn't impressed. The presentation of everything was nice though. I did try some of the risotto which was delicious, creamy, filling, and too much for the guy who ordered it to finish haha. I actually liked their restaurant week food better, so I don't think I would go again until they change their menu. I definitely need to come up with my own rating system, doing that soon...
when i went to boston we went to this tapas place solea. i wrote about my trip on my other blog thevictoriousvp.tumblr.com. The tapas we had were tortilla espanola, arroz y habas, queso de cabra montanes, gambas al ajillo, vieras al azafran, chorizo a la plancha, ravioles de mariscos, palta reina, setas al ajillo, patatas bravas, camarao piri piri. My favorites were the patatas bravas which are potatoes with a spicy aioli, questo de cabra montanes which is baked goat cheese with tomato and basil (mmmm delicious i gotta try this one !). The ravioles de mariscos were creamy and definitely not dry as i find common in seafood ravioli. The arroz y habas are rice and beans, they had a lot more flavor and tasted different then the way my family cooks them. I love sharing food so tapas are great. For the desserts we shared filloa de dulce de leche which was a crepe with fresh berry and dulce de leche filling, super yum. The other dessert we tried was tarta de chocolate, i thought it was dry and too dense. other then the chocolate dessert dinner was great !
So my friend Emmaleigh and I and our Moms went to this Mexican restaurant in Harrisburg called El Sol. Its really delish and it was my second time there. Whenever my mom gets the chance to go there she does (my Dad has a citrus allergy and mexicans love their citrus). We started the meal off right with frozen margaritas, mmm delicious. We started off with a salsa sampler (guacamole, refried beans and pico de gallo). I had chile relleno which is basically a cheese stuffed chile pepper. Emmaleigh had chile con carne which was pretty good but the meat was a little dry. My mom and hers both had chicken fajitas. They are simple but yummy. NO room for dessert but everything was yummy and I know I'll be back.
For our anniversary we ate at a place called Atlantic Jazz Yard. We got a table on the outside of the open area. There were tables and a bar surrounding an open area where there was live jazz music. The hostess, who was Russian, was super nice, friendly, and accommodating. I was waiting for our table to be cleared while David filled the meter. The guy who was to be our server was giving'the schpeel' to his large table. We sat down and he just came over and asked us if we were ready to order . He didn't give us the specials, favorites, tell us about the restaurant. So when he came back the second time we ordered brie grilled cheese as our appetizer. It came quickly, cut into triangles on whole wheat bread with bacon and raspberry jam. It was to die for (we recreated it the next day). We then ordered our drinks which are all from the prohibition era with hand chipped glass and all made from scratch. I had a Wilmington Street Shuffle which was strong and tangy from the orange zest. David had The Last Word which had gin in it and I thought the taste would be drowned out by everything else in the drink, I was wrong. About the 4th time he came back (after asking him what the specials were and what he recommended). I had soft shell crab with a carrot ginger sauce and tapioca balls. All had very little flavor which was disappointing, I would have preferred a tastier dipping sauce. David had prawns in a spicy coconut sauce over penne. Prawns gross me out because i hate the feelers and eyes and claws so after he disassembled I tried it. The sauce was only picking up the spice from the chorizo and I thought it would have been better if it was a bit thicker of a sauce. For dessert we had the PB&J which was a puff pastry with a creamy, sweet, thick filling over a blueberry puree. We also had a cherry mint hommade ice cream with a cookie similar to biscotti. Both were delicious, PB&J being my favorite (I'm a sucker for PB). All in all good for the apps and desserts, not the entrees or drinks.